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Polio

Poliomyelitis anterior acuta, also known as polio, is the virus with which the guys from Rollaball have to live.

Although 95% of the infected people will not notice that they have polio, it is a highly contagious disease that causes irreversible muscle paralysis in 1% of the infected persons. This happens mostly in the legs, but also in the arms and lungs,causing respiratory problems or, in acute cases, death.

Once infected, medications have no effect so internationalhealth organisations, like WHO, Global Polio Eradication Initiative and Rotary International, are working to prevent the virus by vaccinating children around the world. Their goal is to eliminate polio worldwide and they have had successes such as the previous polio ‘hotspot’, India,recently being declared ‘one year polio free’. These vaccination programmes started in 1988 with 125 infected countries, and now only Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan remain polio endemic.

Although these figures are encouraging, there are still millions of people across the world who live with the effects of the polio virus and need support and facilities to live with their disability.